Together for the Common Good Newsletter April 2013
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Welcome to our occasional newsletter, to keep you in the picture as the Together for the Common Good project unfolds.
Pope Francis has spoken of "the generous activity of Christians who dedicate themselves to helping the sick, orphans, the homeless, and all the marginalised, thus striving to make society more humane and more just". Archbishop Justin Welby reminded us that "... the Churches together run innumerable food banks, shelter the homeless, educate a million children, offer debt counselling...and far, far more."
It is encouraging to have spiritual leaders with priorities that are attuned to the most urgent needs of our times and the early signs for closer ecumenical understanding are good. In the meantime, social imperatives cry out for us to collaborate, wherever possible, both to respond to practical needs and to speak out for social justice. Working ‘better together’ is the focus of Together for the Common Good.
T4CG is drawing attention to common ground between Anglican, Catholic and Free Church social justice traditions and teachings to underline the shared commitment to, and expertise in, working for the common good. The project involves research and a national conference, both leading to a book to be published in 2014. If you have already booked for the conference - thank you, and we look forward to seeing you in September. If you haven’t yet booked for the conference or taken part in other ways, we’d invite you to have a look around the T4CG website to discover the different ways in which you can get involved.
As well as the conference, there is a research process, which is now well underway, lasting the whole of this calendar year. You can contribute to the research by offering a case study, or by pointing to appropriate reference materials or making a written or verbal submission. We want the research to be informed by different Christian traditions in order to highlight effective strategies for collaboration. The conference and the research will feed the book to be published in 2014.
The T4CG conference (6-8 September 2013) will be an intensive working weekend where delegates are encouraged to participate fully. It will include a series of open debates and facilitated group discussions. The full conference programme will be announced in due course. We are delighted that so far, our leading participants confirmed include: Maurice Glasman and Phillip Blond, Archbishop Bernard Longley, John Battle, Dame Mary Tanner, Frank Field MP, Bernadette Farrell, Pat Jones, Max Steinberg, Revd Ruth Gee, Clifford Longley, Claire Dove, Rt Revd Rupert Hoare and others... See the website for further names and more details.
A diverse range of people and organisations is taking part in the T4CG project - both involved in the research and among conference delegates so far registered - organisations from CUF to CSAN, CAP to London Citizens, from Nugent Care to Progressio and Housing Justice; from private and voluntary sector partners, to dioceses and free church organisations; from CTBI, ARCIC III, IARCCUM, WCC to on-the-ground practitioners, clergy, leading lay people, commentators, politicians and academics: of which a significant proportion comprises those actively involved in the Sheppard Worlock years. We are working hard to achieve a broad range of voices.
We hope you will join us in exploring how different faith communities can work better together most effectively for social justice - in these difficult times it is more important than ever.
Together for the Common Good
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Together for the Common Good is guided by a Steering Group: Tim Livesey, Revd Dr Peter McGrail, Rt Revd Stephen Platten (Chair), Professor Hilary Russell, Revd Professor Nicholas Sagovsky, Jenny Sinclair.
© T4CG 2013. www.togetherforthecommongood.co.uk